I loved Cold Welcome which was one of my favourite books of 2017 – see my review here, so I was really excited when this second book in the series was published.
When Admiral Kylara Vatta and a ship full of strangers were marooned on an inhospitable arctic island, they uncovered secrets that someone on Ky’s planet was ready to kill to keep hidden. Now, the existence of the mysterious arctic base has been revealed, but the organisation behind it still lurks in the shadows, doing all it can to silence her. It is up to the intrepid Ky to force the perpetrators into the light and uncover decades’ worth of secrets – some of which lie at the very heart of her family’s greatest tragedy.
If you haven’t yet had the pleasure of reading Cold Welcome, then I suggest you put this one on hold and track it down, because the story carries on almost seamlessly from that first adventure featuring Ky Vatta and the other hapless passengers who crashed into the sea with her. However, this story also includes a lot of the characters who featured in Moon’s previous series, Vatta’s War. As I have read all the books in this space opera adventure series, I was delighted to meet up with characters whom I regarded as old friends. Himself, who only read the first book, found he was floundering at bit at the start.
I found this story to be gripping and tension-filled as Ky finds herself once more in the middle of a mess of trouble. This time though, she is back home where she should feel safe. I really liked the fact that she was once more confronted with a situation where she didn’t know who to trust. Moon is very good at building the tension and providing an atmosphere of suspicion. It seems particularly hard on the poor souls who endured all sorts of hardships, while struggling to survive in desperate conditions, only also to face imprisonment where they are drugged into drooling helplessness.
One aspect I appreciated is that now she is back home, Ky finds she has to deal with her cousin, Stella. The two don’t particularly get on, mostly because they clashed a lot during their teens. The cliché would be that because they are Family and under threat, the two young women would suddenly pull together – and it was refreshing that Moon sidesteps that wornout trope and provides us with a more interesting and believable dynamic. The other main character who faces a crisis is Grace, who in theory, as Rector of the planet, should be well guarded and entirely capable of coping with any threat to her leadership. Events prove otherwise.
The story is fast-moving, with plenty going on. And unlike Cold Welcome, the viewpoint swings between a larger cast of main characters, both protagonists and villains. Moon is deft at quickly establishing sympathetic characters and making me care about what happens to them and I found myself caught up in the plot, reluctant to put the book down until I knew what happens next. Of course, with such a steady build-up in tension, the climax of the book has to really matter and Moon succeeds in producing plenty of action as both sides make their move. I thoroughly enjoyed this one and will be eagerly looking out for the next book in this engaging series. This is recommended for fans of science fiction thrillers – though ideally, you should first read the Vatta’s War series and Cold Welcome.
Glad to see you enjoyed this one so much. I don’t think I’ve read Moon before so I’ll have to keep an eye out for this one. Although I am trying to finish a few series before starting any others. We’ll see how well that goes.
I absolutely LOVED Cold Welcome – it is such a great read. This one is quite up there, but it’s very close. She is certainly one of my long-standing favourite space opera authors.
I’m so glad for your perspective! I knew in my heart that my problem with the book had to stem from not knowing the full history from the first series. I’m very glad your review kind of confirms that, I suppose before I continue any further with this series I should definitely go back and read Vatta’s War.
I think you would really enjoy the Vatta’s War series, anyway – at least, I hope so! I look forward to reading your take on it.
Having finished “Cold Welcome” recently, I was already looking forward to its sequel, and reading your review raised my expectations even more, so I guess I will not wait too long before starting this one. I’m very glad to learn that the dark forces working in the shadows are not vanquished: this will certainly make for a breath-taking read!
Thanks for sharing!
I look forward to hearing what you make of it, Maddalena:)
I’ve just read and liked this review over on Goodreads, as I had gone there to add “Meet Me in the Strange”. I greatly enjoyed reading it! The characters sound very compelling, and I loved that you didn’t have any spoilers!
That cover is SO breathtaking!! I think I’ll feature it in my meme, “Shelf Candy Saturday”! Ditto for the cover of “Meet Me in the Strange”! And I will be sure to mention your blog, too!
Thanks so much for your GREAT review!! HUGS!! ❤ ❤ ❤ 🙂 🙂 🙂
Thank you for your lovely comments, Maria:)). I have a bit of bee in my bonnet about spoilers – I LOATHE them and try very hard to ensure I don’t include anything in my review that would damage any prospective reader’s experience with the book – so I really appreciate your comment! Thank you for taking the time and trouble to tell me – you are a star:))
You’re very welcome, Sarah! And thanks for the lovely compliment!! ❤ ❤
I wanted to let you know that I've published a post about this GORGEOUS cover, on my book meme, "Shelf Candy Saturday", and I mentioned your blog, as well as this review!
You can find the post at this link:
Hope you're having a GREAT Sunday!! HUGS!! ❤ 🙂
Thank you so much, Maria:). Yes – today has been a lovely, lovely day! I hope yours, too, has been splendid:)) Hugsxx
Thank you so much for that! I completely understand why you fell in love with this cover – and I’ve had a look, but I cannot find any more information about it. I loved your article and as you know – I tend to be something of a sucker for a pretty cover, too:))
This was a timely post. I had Cold Welcome scheduled to be read this weekend. I am glad ye let me know about the Vatta’s War series cause I would rather read them in order. I just requested the first book in the series from a local library. Let’s hope I get ahold of it soon.
x The Captain
Oh, I hope you get hold of it soon, Cap – I’m very much looking forward to reading what you think of the series. I really enjoy her writing:)
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I couldn’t help but snicker at your advise to start from book 1, and then – when I jumped back to our conversation below it – to see the reflection of it.
That aside, it’s yet another series I haven’t gotten around to reading yet, but at least I get to enjoy your reviews. 🙂
Ah, well… bear in mind I’m a great exponent of other folks learning by my mistakes:)). But this being epic sci fi – I really think it would be very tricky to actually get the best out of this one by crashing midway into it.